United States takes aim at China, Iran, Russia over treaty violations

Elias Hubbard
December 5, 2018

The United States and Iran traded accusations on Tuesday over Tehran's latest ballistic missile test, which the UN Security Council discussed behind closed doors without taking any action.

That resolution calls on Iran to refrain from testing missiles capable of carrying a nuclear weapon.

Iran has long maintained that its missile program is defensive in nature and not aimed at ensuring the delivery of a nuclear weapon, a stance supported by Russian Federation at the Security Council.

"We will continue to both develop and test missiles", Shekarchi said.

On Saturday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Iran's test of "a medium range ballistic missile that's capable of carrying multiple warheads ... violates UNSCR 2231".

The United States on Tuesday urged the UN Security Council to condemn Iran's ballistic missile test, which it described as "dangerous and concerning" and a violation of a UN resolution.

US President Donald Trump's top diplomat promised on Tuesday a new democratic world order in which Washington will strengthen or jettison worldwide agreements as it sees fit to stop "bad actors" such as Russia, China and Iran from gaining.

Tehran has repeatedly rejected negotiations over its missile program and insists the missiles are only to be used for defensive purposes.

The mission, in a statement released on Tuesday, described the United States as the gross violator of the resolution, emphasizing that "portraying Iran's ballistic missile program as inconsistent with Resolution 2231 or as a regional threat is a deceptive and hostile policy of the USA". The Dutch representative to the UN, Karel J.G. van Oosterom, also confined himself to saying, "We believe the test does not conform to the nuclear deal".

Pompeo warned that Iran's "missile testing and missile proliferation is growing", and called on the country to "cease immediately all activities related to ballistic missiles created to be capable of delivering nuclear weapons".

Iran said on Sunday it would continue missile tests to build up its defences and denied this was in breach of United Nations resolutions following US allegations that Tehran had tested a new missile capable of carrying multiple warheads.

"Iran is among the world's top powers in building missiles, radars, armoured vehicles and unmanned aerial vehicles", Hatami told official IRNA news agency, reports Xinhua.

The administration is hoping to convince European allies to move forward with new sanctions as reprisal for the missile tests, a position many of these allies are hesitant to adopt. "We will not ask any country's permission in this regard".

Those US sanctions have targeted Iran's critical oil sector, as well as several major Iranian banks and other industries. Trump has threatened to withdraw from the treaty and deploy US missiles in Europe in response.

"It is a grave and escalating threat, and nations around the world, not just Europe, need to do everything they can to be targeting Iran's missile program", Hook said.

European leaders have been troubled by Mr Trump's rhetoric and fear his decision to pull out of the Paris climate change accord and the 2015 Iran nuclear deal undermine European priorities.

Netanyahu made an unexpected trip to Brussels on Monday afternoon for the meeting with Pompeo, who is in Belgium for talks with North Atlantic Treaty Organisation counterparts.

On Monday, Iran's oil minister, Bijan Zanganeh, said Tehran aims to help regular Iranians cope with the economic problems created by USA pressure.

"We have a legal and religious duty to reduce the income pressure on the people".

"The more treaties we sign, the safer we supposedly are".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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